“You make known to me the path of life, you will fill me with joy in your presence…” Psalm 16:11


What do you do for self-care? —taking time for yourself, something that energizes you, maybe relaxes you or helps you to feel more centered and balanced, renews you spiritually…….

If you had to rate your “self-care” on a scale of 1-10, with 10 being the best, what would you give it?

We have 7 children. One’s away at college, so there are only 6 at home, but between the running/busy schedule and Mt. Washmore, ummm, I mean laundry, it can feel like 16 some days.  Sometimes it’s hard to have time for myself or to spend a lot of time doing things that I enjoy, just to do them. But, that’s what makes it even more essential that I find time for self-care.

As crazy as it sounds, one of the things I enjoy doing is painting. Now, before you think I’m some talented person that can paint a beautiful painting…..I’m talking walls and furniture. My brother got the art genes (and art degree), not me. If you ask my family, they’ll say I’m always painting a room or something around the house. Sadly, there are usually swatches of paint on walls and furniture while I look at it for a while (or forget about it) and decide which one I like.

It’s a lot of work, and seems to make a bigger mess in the process, but it’s actually relaxing for me and I love the finished product and seeing the difference color makes. Last week, I painted my son’s room and the fireplace/focal wall in our living room. This week, I plan to paint a couple of doors black. A couple of weeks ago, I helped my dad to whitewash his fireplace and brick wall around it. It turned out great and was an amazing difference.

Another thing I enjoy doing is running or going for long 5-6 mile walks. Ok, wait. Let me restate that. It’s kind of a love/hate relationship with running. I love it after I’m finished—or at least after the first couple of miles. I love the time alone and I spend a lot of time thinking while I’m running. I’m not a good runner by any means. I used to run a lot. Now– not so much. I’m trying to get back into it.  Actually, I like working out in any form. I used to teach aerobics, go to the gym all the time, run, etc. Then life happened the last few years and with 2 new babies, full-time school, a sick mom, and a sick husband.  It got really hard to be consistent.

Reading, doing Bible studies, taking time to learn something new…..they all help to keep me balanced.

I definitely feel a difference when I’m taking care of myself regularly and when I’m not. It’s so important. I really need it.  I’m trying to focus on being intentional and consistent in that area again now that I have more time and life has settled back down.

The important thing is that I know what works for me though. I can tell when I’m balanced and when things get a little (or a lot) out of control, and I know what types of things I can do to take care of myself and re-energize. What works for one person may not work for others. Something that one finds energizing may be a huge energy-drainer for the next person.

  •  What makes a difference in your life?
  • What gives you energy and makes you feel better?
  • What is absolutely essential for you?
  • What isn’t essential, but you can tell a difference when you incorporate it into your life? It could be anything—–alone time, reading, spending one-on-one time with someone,  a hobby…….you get the idea.

Back to our original question:

If you were to rate your “self-care” on a scale of 1-10, with 10 being the best, what would you give it?

  • Why?
  • How could you raise that number 2 points?
  • What would that look like?
  • How would it impact your life if you made that change?
  • What would it cost you if you didn’t make a change?
  • What would you realistically like your self-care to look like right now? (we know we have stages in life and some are easier and less hectic than others)
  • If you were to be at a “10”, what would that look like? How could you reach that?

So, the big question……….What one thing will you do today for self-care and what impact will that have on your life?


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